Gender differences in health-related quality of life among Estonian adolescents: a 6-month follow-up
Keywords: adolescence, longitudinal study, physical health, psychosocial health, PedsQL™ 4.0 Generic Core Scales
AbstractThis study aimed to determine the differences between boys and girls in the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and its domains of physical health, emotional-, social-, and school-related functioning over a six-month period. Six hundred and forty seven Estonian secondary school students participated in the study, of whom 401 (177 boys and 224 girls; age 13.60±0.63 years) filled in the HRQoL questionnaire (PedsQL™ 4.0 Generic Core Scales) on three occasions: baseline, 3-month, and 6-month follow-ups. To analyse the changes in HRQoL among boys and girls over a six-month period, repeated measures ANOVA was performed. The results revealed that boys scored significantly higher compared to girls on emotional functioning at all three time points over a six-month period. As for total score of HRQoL, and physical and psychosocial health, boys scored significantly higher than girls only on the first and second measurements. No significant changes in total score of HRQoL as well as its domains were followed in boys or girls between baseline, 3-month, and 6-month follow-ups. The lower perceptions of total score of HRQoL as well as its domains of physical health, emotional functioning, and psychosocial health among girls in Estonia over a six month period support the findings of previous longitudinal studies.